A new study by FrieslandCampina Ingredients, global innovator in healthy and functional ingredients and solutions, has demonstrated the benefits of its Biotis™ SleepWell concept in reducing stress and providing a better night’s sleep in healthy adults. The study, conducted in close collaboration with researchers from leading contract research organisation, NIZO, showed Biotis™ SleepWell reduced morning cortisol levels – the fight or flight hormone associated with stress – and stimulated Bifidobacterium production, which is associated with improvements in stress and sleep quality.
The study was a double blind, randomised cross over study with two intervention periods of three weeks each. During the intervention periods, 70 adults aged 30-50 suffering with moderate sleep disturbances received a daily dose of Biotis™ SleepWell – a product concept designed by FrieslandCampina Ingredients, containing Biotis™ GOS (galacto-oligosaccharides), dairy protein-derived amino acids tryptophan and cysteine, and complementary vitamins and minerals – one hour before bed. Participants completed the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) questionnaire to measure sleep quality while cortisol levels were measured through five saliva samples. In addition, microbiota analysis was carried out in the first intervention period and after three weeks of intervention.
The results showed that after 21 days, participants who had taken Biotis™ SleepWell demonstrated reduced cortisol levels compared to a control group, while microbiota analysis showed that participants taking Biotis™ SleepWell had improved gut health, characterised by enhanced Bifidobacteria levels, which has been linked to improving sleep quality. The study also showed that participants with a PSQI-score of ≥9 at baseline reported improvements in sleep quality after 14 days of intervention compared to those taking a placebo.
Commenting on the study, Anne Peter Lindeboom, managing director of Innovation at FrieslandCampina Ingredients, said: “A good night sleep is highly important to overall health and wellbeing – a crucial aspect of optimal cognitive performance is adequate rest. However, achieving a good night’s sleep isn’t always easy as people juggle family, social and work commitments. Added to this is the impact the pandemic has had on consumers’ mental health.
“Often unrecognised and underreported, insufficient sleep is prevalent across demographics, and tackling it is a top priority for many people. Which is why we developed Biotis™ SleepWell to inspire manufacturers to innovate to improve consumers’ sleep quality. Our aim has been to leverage a unique combination of high-quality ingredients to support falling asleep, helping people to sleep through the night, and facilitate waking up refreshed.
“We’re very excited that this study has provided further evidence of the link between the gut microbiome and mental wellbeing, as well as how psychobiotics like Biotis™ SleepWell could reduce feelings of stress and improve sleep quality. These findings are crucial, not only for further exploration of the gut-brain axis, but also to help food, drink and supplement manufacturers produce clinically-proven solutions that respond to consumer desire to improve overall health and wellbeing.”
NIZO Chief Executive Officer Gisella Frijlink, added: “Nutrition and health go hand in hand – consumers are increasingly turning to natural products with substantiated health benefits to improve their quality of life. We believe partnership and a multidisciplinary approach are essential elements to deliver on this expectation and solve the health problems faced by today’s consumers. We’re really excited to yet again be collaborating with FrieslandCampina Ingredients to bring this innovative field of research to life, demonstrating the most cutting-edge nutritional science in relation to the microbiome and the gut-brain axis.”
The full study can be found on the MDPI website.